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There are quite a few types of toddler formulas, which is why it can be difficult for parents to decide. To make your decision a little easier, we have created an overview of common formula types for toddlers. We did not stop there though, since we also added some information on when parents should use toddler formula and the benefits it might deliver. To learn more about toddler formulas, please read our information below.

When Is Toddler Formula Used Instead of Regular Milk?

Parents can use a toddler formula instead of regular milk for many reasons. Some toddlers may need toddler formula for a medical reason, for example due to an underdeveloped digestive system or an underlying medical condition that affects the toddler’s ability to digest regular milk. However, there are less severe reasons why toddlers may need a toddler formula, for example when the toddler has some fussy eating habits and parents want to prevent them from developing a nutrient deficiency.

If you believe your child may benefit more from a toddler formula than regular milk, please consult your paediatrician or another specialised health professional before you make the switch. Underlying medical problems could cause problems during mealtimes, which is why it is essential to rule out these underlying medical conditions first.

goats milk formula

What Types of Formula Can Toddlers Use?

Amongst a large range of toddler formulas, cow’s milk and goat’s milk toddler formula are the most popular. Both formulas are based on the same nutritional standards and could provide the nutrients your toddler is not getting from solid foods.

When comparing cow’s milk with goat’s milk toddler formula, goat’s milk toddler formula could provide additional benefits for toddlers who are prone to digestive difficulties. This can be explained by the presence of prebiotic oligosaccharides, non-digestible fibres performing several functions in the digestive tract.

The large number of prebiotic oligosaccharides, obtained from goat’s milk toddler formula, can absorb water in the digestive tract. The absorption of water influences passing stool, since water makes it softer and easier to pass. Prebiotic oligosaccharides from goat’s milk toddler formula also promote the growth of healthy gut bacteria, which make digestion easier as well. The growth of these healthy bacteria also influences the number of pathogenic bacteria, which are the bacteria responsible for infections. By promoting healthy bacteria, prebiotic oligosaccharides directly limit the number of pathogenic bacteria in the digestive tract.

There are some exceptions though, because formulas such as soy-based and hydrolysed formula may be prescribed by a health professional, mainly because there is an underlying medical reason that requires these special formulas. However, the use of these formulas is not advised without acquired medical advice from a licensed health professional.

What Medical Problems May Cause Digestive Problems in Toddlers?

There are numerous medical conditions that may affect your child’s ability to digest certain foods. These conditions vary in intensity and severity. If you believe your child may suffer from such a condition, it is essential to contact a licensed health professional immediately.


EGID  stands for Eosinophilic Gastrointestinal Disorders; this is an umbrella term used to refer to digestive problems caused by extra white blood cells in the child’s digestive tract. The presence of these additional white blood cells causes side-effects such as inflammation and swelling, resulting in pain and discomfort. The toddler may also have difficulty swallowing.

Unfortunately, there is no cure for EGID. However, your paediatrician can reduce the number of white blood cells in the digestive tract with steroids; this will also ease some of the symptoms your toddler experiences. In addition to medication, parents may have to adjust their toddler’s diet and remove any foods that may be causing an allergic reaction.

Celiac Disease

Children suffering from celiac disease are not able to digest gluten; a specific protein found in ingredients such as wheat, barley and rye. When left untreated, the condition may cause damage to the small intestines and prevent your toddler from absorbing essential nutrients from their solid foods.

The only treatment for Celiac Disease is a gluten-free diet. By not consuming gluten, damage to the small intestine can be stopped and the body can start to heal itself. In most cases, toddlers recover after a couple of days of gluten-free foods.


Intussusception is most common in young children, so this condition is something parents should be aware of. The condition is caused by an obstruction of the bowel, which occurs when one part of the intestine folds in on another part of the digestive tract.

Bowel obstruction can be accompanied by some severe symptoms; this includes pain, swelling and fatigue. In severe cases, the bowel obstruction may cause a tear in the intestines. The cause for the obstruction is currently unknown and may occur in any part of the digestive tract.

Paediatricians can clear the bowel obstruction by using an enema with air or liquid. When successful, the enema can push the intestine back in the right place. For most toddlers, this treatment is executed successfully. However, when the enema does not resolve the problem, the toddler may need surgery.

goats milk for toddlers

Short Bowel Syndrome

The short bowel syndrome can also be a cause of digestive problems with toddlers. The condition may cause a lack of nutrients, since there is not enough intestine available to absorb the nutrients and fluids your child needs.

Short bowel syndrome is usually accompanied by numerous symptoms; this includes diarrhea, malnutrition, dehydration, kidney stones and severe diaper rash. To treat these symptoms, and enable the child to obtain the right nutrients, parents must implement dietary changes. Some toddlers may also need medications to ease the symptoms and enable easier passage of food. However, surgery can be advised for extreme cases of short bowel syndrome.


Goat’s milk toddler formula is a great formula option for toddlers with a deficiency of nutrients in their diet, providing no other formula has been prescribed by a health professional. Therefore, always check with your health professional before you choose any formula for your toddler.